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Ameyoko Shopping: 5 Tips to Get the Best Bargain Deals


Ameya Yokocho Shopping Street | Image Courtesy of Dick Thomas Johnson/Flickr

Noisy, crowded, and bustling -- this is how both locals and tourists would describe the streets of Ameya Yokocho, which is more commonly known as Ameyoko. And while Ameya Yokocho means "candy sellers' alley" in Japanese, one will find a wide variety of products being sold at bargain prices. This colorful yet busy district in Tokyo's Ueno area has literally everything you need -- clothes, shoes, Japanese food, fresh vegetables and fish, cosmetic kits, and even used branded watches.


For newbies, it's easy to get lost or be dragged by strangers when hunting for cheap items in this long stretch of open-air food stores and shops. It's important to keep in mind these 5 tips to score amazing deals and at the same time, enjoy a unique shopping experience at Ameyoko.



List down what you need or want to buy


With lots of bargain deals available in Ameyoko, it would be definitely hard for one to shop wisely. If you're on a tight budget or would simply want to spend within your shopping allowance, it's important to list down everything that you need or considering to purchase. Most tourists would want to go on a souvenir shopping spree, whether food or products that can only be found in Japan.



Research for the right spots


After you've listed down and completed your things-to-buy list, the next step would be to research for the spots that you would need to go to -- will you go to the food stalls, clothing stalls or find where the jewellery shops are? By doing this, it lessens the time spent looking for the items that you need to buy. Not all tourists would want to spend their time going through the 400 stores in this busy area.



Find out the specialty stores


Don't limit yourself to your research (about the shops that sell what you'd want to purchase) and basic knowledge of what Ameyoko has to offer. Go the extra mile and look for the must-visit stores such as Shimura Shoten, which is famous for chocolate bargain sales. Or, how about a visit to Kanariya Keshoshin -- every make up lover's paradise? Likewise, don't miss out visiting Ameyoko Center Building where you can find rare Asian ingredients!



Read reviews and tips from fellow travelers


As part of your research, it's also important to ask friends or colleagues who have been to Ameyoko. Ask them about their shopping experience, personal tips (e.g. the best time to go to Ameyoko), or unusual cheap finds withing the shopping district. If your network is limited, do a quick research and read reviews of fellow travelers. You'll get recommendations such as the perfect clothing or shoes to wear when shopping, the food stalls that one has to visit, or even where to get the best takoyaki.



Walk around and ask locals


Of course, it's guaranteed that you'll get the best tips and recommendations about Ameyoko Shopping when asking locals. If you have ample time to explore the area, spend a half-day exploring the streets and try to strike a conversation with locals. If you need companions or would want to ensure a hassle-free experience, join walking tours in Tokyo and meet fellow backpackers and tourists who'd want to get the most out of their stay in Japan!


Joining free walking tours in Tokyo is not only an opportunity for you to meet foreign friends and discover the locality's culture and best-kept secrets. It's also a great way to get expert tips and hear first-hand experiences from Tokyo's locals.


Tokyo Localized provides visitors and travellers to Tokyo with a unique perspective of this great city, what makes us unique is that our tour guides live and work in Tokyo, have a passion for this city and love meeting and welcoming new faces. Find out more about our Unique Day and Night Tours of Tokyo - we can't wait to meet you!


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